Daily Marauder


ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA by Marauder

ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA

CBS Sports has just released the final tally of their traffic figures for this year’s NCAA March Madness, and the results are pretty impressive. Over the course of the tournament, viewers watched a total of 8.6 million total hours of streamed audio and video (a 75% increase over the 4.92 million last year). 7.52 million visitors used the on Demand video player, versus 4.76 million last year. During the Final Four (semifinal) round and championship games, viewers watched 515,000 total hours of content, which was a 51% increase over last year’s stats. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/04/09/viewers-flock-to-cbs-sports-for-march-madness-86-million-total-hours-watched 4/9)

march-madness

Google and Universal Music Group annouced the upcoming launch of VEVO, a site billed as ‘premium online music hub built for consumers, advertisers, and content owners..’. The site, which will launch later this year, will include UMG’s catalog of music videos, and will be powered by YouTube’s technology. The two companies will share advertising revenue generated by the site. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/04/09/youtube-and-umg-team-for-vevo-premium-music-service 4/9)

yt

Worldwide visitors to Twitter neared 10 million in February, up 700% in a year, reports comScore. Adults 35 and older are leading the trend. Specifically, 45-54 year olds are 36% more likely than average to visit Twitter, as many businesses sign up to use the service. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://blogs.usatoday.com/technologylive/2009/04/twitter-traffic-surging.html 4/8)

twitter

Some young people are starting to feel conflicted about staying in constant contact through social media outlets. “With Facebook, LinkedIn, Plaxo and Twitter, young adults struggle to keep up to avoid the consequences — being left out of the loop or becoming irrelevant.” (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://tech.yahoo.com/news/ap/20090408/ap_on_hi_te/tec_sociability_fatigue 4/8)

Showtime is offering Mixed Martial Arts fans a bit of interactivity with the PPV StrikeForce All Access bout on April 11. Fans who pony up $24.95 will have access to a simulcast video streaming interface providing 5 multiple camera angles. They will also be able to talk smack through a Facebook Connect integration. CDNs BitGravity and Episodic are powering the interactive stream. (Cynopsis 4/9)

VERY impressive.  A whole new way to watch a fight with multiple camera angles and side by side Facebook conversations?  Way to inspire a community around the sport.

strikeforce-showtime

The new Digg search, which Techcrunch wrote about last week with a screenshot, just went live. Small feature change, but it’ll have a big impact on Digg usability. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/04/09/new-digg-search-launches 4/9)

digg-search

In a new comedic Web video, Zac Efron hosts a star-studded pool party that dissolves quickly when his rude uncle arrives. The Disney “High School Musical” star did the video for FunnyOrDie.com, the video site co-founded by Will Ferrell. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090408/ap_en_ot/people_zac_efron_video 4/8)

ze

Disney CEO Bob Iger and Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes are at odds about the model for offering television shows online. Disney, which owns broadcaster ABC, plans to make TV shows available for free; Time Warner, which owns cable channels, supports a pay model. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://www.nypost.com/seven/04092009/business/cast_aside_profit_163624.htm 4/9)

The Internet will overtake broadcast television as Europe’s most consumed form of media in June 2010 if current growth trends continue, according to research by Microsoft. Internet consumption in 2010 will average 14.2 hours per week, compared to 11.5 hours a week for TV. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://www.brandrepublic.com/Discipline/Media/News/897321/European-internet-consumption-overtake-TV-14-months/ 4/8)

YouTube is selling advertisements against about 9% of its video views in the U.S., up from just 6% a year ago. In fact, Google’s video site is selling ads against more videos than its nearest competitor — MySpace parent Fox Interactive Media — has total views. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://adage.com/digital/article?article_id=135859 4/8)

The Web’s share of advertising dollars will approach 10% this year and will exceed 15% by 2013, says eMarketer. The Web’s “inherent trackability” is leading marketers to spend more on Internet ads, while spending less on ads in radio, newspapers and magazines. (Iwantmedia 4/9, http://www.mediaweek.com/mw/content_display/news/digital-downloads/metrics/e3ic007c2c7c3c565c8ba683cc66ad4389a 4/8)

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ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA by Marauder

ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA

Digital-music retailers such as Amazon MP3 are selling full albums — even popular downloads — for as little as 99 cents. “It is the schoolyard crack-dealer approach,” a metrics expert said. “We will essentially give it away in order to get you to try it because we think you’re going to get hooked, and we think you’re going to come back.” The Boston Globe (3/18)

Some new releases, including ”No Line on the Horizon” by U2 (above), are being priced for a limited time on Amazon MP3 for $3.99. (CBS, Jeffrey R. Staab via Associated Press)

music

The Counting Crows have ended their eighteen-year label relationship with Geffen Records (now part of Universal Music Group), lead singer Adam Duritz says on the band’s website.  Duritz says the band will go it alone, saying “the internet opens a world of limitless possibility, where the only boundaries are the boundaries of your own imagination.” (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/03/18/counting-crows-goes-label-free/ 3/18)

counting-cows

Prince is launching a fan subscription service called Lotusflow3r. For $77 a year, subscribers will get exclusive music, video, lyrics, artwork and photos of the musician himself. The site also might offer streaming live performances of Prince — complete with song requests. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://www.reuters.com/article/musicNews/idUSTRE52H00K20090318 3/17)

lotus

More Americans bought digital music last year while the number purchasing CDs declined sharply, says market researcher NPD Group. In addition, nearly half of U.S. teens listen to music on social networks such as MySpace, the study says, up from 37% in 2007. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://tech.yahoo.com/news/afp/20090317/tc_afp/entertainmentusmusicinternetnpd 3/17)

After being ridiculed by Democrats on the campaign trail for his lack of digital savvy, John McCain participated in a “ Twitterview” yesterday conducted by ABC News This Week anchor George Stephanopoulos, a first for the hill. The 72-year old Senator has been relying on the microblogging platform to bend his more than 200,000 followers’ ears this month about the excesses of the recently-passed $410 billion federal spending bill. (Cynopsis 3/18)

twitter-mccan

MTV new-media executive David Gale told the crowd at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, that the network has deals with MSN, Fancast, AOL, Joost and Imeem to distribute programming and video clips online. According to this report, the network also is in talks with online sites such as MySpace.com about possible collaborations. TVWeek.com (3/17)

Chappelle Show veteran Charlie Murphy (Eddie’s brother) will star in a new series on Sony’s Crackle.com portal beginning Friday March 20, one of four shows debuting on the site this week.  Crackle shows are also distributed on YouTube, Hulu, MySpace, AOL, Sling Media, Veoh, VCast, Sprint TV and direct to broadband-enabled Bravia TVs. (Cynopsis 3/18)

CBS’ TV.com is making several content deals, bringing its video library to more than 2,000 hours of content. The new content deals with NCAA and Starz Media are in addition to existing agreements with companies including MGM Studios, PBS, Showtime and Sony Pictures Television. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://www.tvweek.com/news/2009/03/tvcom_signs_content_deals_with.php 3/17)

News Corp.’s MySpace is set for some big changes, according to Pali Research analyst Richard Greenfield. Unit parent Fox Interactive Media is seeing costs increase as revenues shrink. The company will have “little choice” but to make significant job cuts. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://blogs.barrons.com/techtraderdaily/2009/03/17/myspace-pali-sees-big-rev-drop-expects-layoffs/ 3/17)

WPP and Google are teaming up to fund a three-year research program on how advertising in traditional and digital media work together to influence consumer choices. Digital “is young and hasn’t had the same amount of rigorous study applied to it” as print and TV advertising. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123733535930164021.html 3/18)

Comcast’s plan to make cable programming available online to subscribers, an initiative that will be called On-Demand Online, will reinforce cable TV’s economic model because it will require viewers to pay for top-quality content, according to Karin Gilford, Comcast Interactive Media’s senior vice president of Fancast and online entertainment. “We want to bring a lot of content that is not online right now, while still preserving the economic model for the industry,” she said. Multichannel News (3/17)

AOL is moving aggressively toward becoming a producer of traditional news, hiring journalists and launching content sites, such as the forthcoming Politics Daily. The company says it aims to create “blue chip editorial brands rising out of the ashes” of newspapers and magazines. (Iwantmedia 3/18, http://www.thewrap.com/article/1921 3/16)

The Diffusion Group has announced new statistics showing that 76% would categorize a widget toolbar on a primary TV set as “valuable.” Yahoo!, Intel and Verizon Communications are among the companies making inroads in the TV-widget space. The New York Times/GigaOM (3/17)

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ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA by Marauder

ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA

Media companies appear to be losing the battle over illicit digital copies of television episodes and films. Illegal downloading and streaming is increasingly becoming a mainstream behavior. NBC Universal exec Richard Cotton says: “Young people conclude that if it’s so easy, it can’t be wrong.” (Iwantmedia 2/5, http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/05/business/media/05piracy.html?_r=1 2/5)

Doesn’t this feel kind of nostalgic? Anyone remember a little Deathmatch called Napster vs. the music business? Hmmmm… The world has a funny little way of repeating itself when the snooze button is depressed.

A high-quality streaming video version of “Slumdog Millionaire” as seen on a secondary site reached through a “link farm” featuring pirated movies.

illegal1

Media CEOs say they are seeing their audiences move toward free or lost-cost Web video — both television and movies — and away from traditional delivery methods, such as cable television and DVDs. More young people are saying: “All I need is broadband.” (Iwantmedia 2/5, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB123377977256648981.html 2/5)

With Time Warner reporting earnings yesterday, we now have online advertising numbers for the fourth quarter from the four largest players: Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, and AOL. Tallying up their online advertising revenues provides a decent proxy for the health of the overall online advertising industry as a whole, since they represent a majority of those revenues. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/02/05/is-the-worst-behind-us-online-ad-revenues-pick-up-in-the-fourth-quarter 2/5)

online-ad

Things are not going well for Universal Music Group’s in its lawsuit against video-sharing site Veoh. First, the Los Angeles judge, A. Howard Matz, ruled last month that the safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act do apply to the case, contrary to UMG’s request for summary judgment. On Monday, Veoh scored another point in the preliminary legal sparring that always precedes the main event. The same judge threw out the part of the complaint that named Veoh’s investors as defendants in the suit. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/02/04/judge-tells-umg-no-you-cannot-sue-veohs-investors-for-copyright-infringement 2/4)

v-u

Microsoft is partnering with entertainment firm BermanBraun Interactive to create a celebrity news site. The creators of the new Wonderwall say it will attempt to “decommoditize” the stream of celebrity images, with a balance of the editorial tone found on TMZ and People.com. (Iwantmedia 2/5, http://blog.seattletimes.nwsource.com/techtracks/2009/02/05/msn_launches_new_celeb_gossip_site_wonderwall.html 2/5)

And here I thought Wonderwall was an Oasis song? Microsoft take down Perez or TMZ? Doubtful.

wonderwall

Online film site Jaman signed a deal with E1 Entertainment to add nearly 3,000 of the studio’s titles to its download service including feature films, documentaries, episodic series and classic American TV shows. E1′s library includes the works of cinema masters including Jacques Demy, Claude Chabrol, Jean-Luc Godard, Jacques Rivette, Eric Rohmer. (Cynopsis 2/5)

The comedians at Team Tiger Awesome have come up with an imaginative spoof of their own for MTV Network’s Atom.com to celebrate Oprah Winfrey’s recent birthday. Oprah is Dead riffs on just how much the queen of daytime television has come to mean to America. (Cynopsis 2/5)

JuicyCampus, an online hangout for college students to spread anonymous rumors, is shutting down, citing a lack of advertising revenue and funding. Despite expanding to more than 500 U.S. campuses, the site was unable to “muster the resources needed to survive,” says CEO Matt Ivester. (Iwantmedia 2/5, http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/technology/2009/02/juicy-campus.html 2/4)

U.S. Web surfers watched 14.3 billion online videos in December, a 13% increase from the month before, according to a study by comScore. YouTube had the biggest gain in viewers, a growth of 49%, and it represented about 41% of the market. TVWeek.com (2/4)

Google Sites once again ranked as the top video property in the U.S. with 5.9 billion videos viewed (a 41% online video market share), with YouTube accounting for more than 99% of all of its videos viewed, according to ComScore‘s latest Video Metrix report. Fox Interactive Media ranked second with 445 million videos (3.1%), followed by Yahoo! Sites with 330 million (2.3%) and Viacom Digital with 291 million (2.0 percent). Hulu continued its impressive growth trajectory, climbing 6% versus November to 241 million videos viewed. Nearly 150 million U.S. Internet users watched an average of 96 videos per viewer in December. Google Sites surpassed 100 million online video viewers during the month, representing two out of every three Internet users who watched video. (Cynopsis 2/5)

Top U.S. Online Video Properties* by Videos Viewed – December 2008
Property Videos (000) Share (%) of Videos
Total Internet 14,318,722 100.0
Google Sites 5,905,854 41.2
Fox Interactive Media 444,865 3.1
Yahoo! Sites 330,025 2.3
Viacom Digital 290,558 2.0
Microsoft Sites 247,903 1.7
Hulu.com 240,585 1.7
AOL LLC 197,135 1.4
Turner Network 183,948 1.3
Disney Online 148,434 1.0
ESPN 102,542 0.7
Source: comScore Video Metrix
*Rankings based on video content sites; excludes video server networks. Online video includes both streaming and progressive download video

Top U.S. Online Video Properties* by Unique Viewers – December 2008
Property Unique Viewers (000) Average Videos per Viewer
Total Internet 149,587 95.7
Google Sites 100,092 59.0
Fox Interactive Media 56,895 7.8
Yahoo! Sites 42,761 7.7
AOL LLC 31,522 6.3
Microsoft Sites 29,534 8.4
Viacom Digital 27,370 10.6
Hulu.com 24,572 9.8
Turner Network 20,499 9.0
Time Warner – Excl. AOL 17,294 2.8
CBS Corporation 14,840 3.7
Source: comScore Video Metrix

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ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA by Marauder

ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA

For those Web companies that comply by it, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act is turning out to be their best friend. Last week, Universal Music Group (UMG) was denied a summary judgment by a Los Angeles court in its copyright infringement case against Veoh. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/01/05/point-veoh-court-upholds-dmca-protections-in-suit-brought-against-it-by-universal-music-group 1/5)

veoh-universal

Social networkers seemed to use the holiday break to catch up with their profiles as Facebook saw its highest-ever traffic surge on Christmas Eve, according to Hitwise. The site achieved a 2.18% share of overall US internet visits on Dec. 24 vs. an average 1.42% average for the month of Nov. 2008. Traffic to the site increased 41% on Christmas Eve 2008 compared to 2007 and also increased 41% on Christmas Day 2008 compared to 2007. (Cynopsis 1/5)

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TECHNOLOGY by Marauder
November 21, 2008, 2:24 AM
Filed under: TECHNOLOGY | Tags: , , , , , , ,

TECHNOLOGY

Microsoft has added a new twist to its $14.99-a-month Zune Pass subscription service, allowing users to permanently keep 10 songs each month. The move, which is designed to boost subscriber numbers, was coupled with news that Microsoft signed deals to enable it to sell MP3s of music from Sony BMG Music Entertainment and Universal Music Group. MSNBC/The Associated Press (11/20)

zune

3-D video could be the next big thing for HDTV makers, according to a study by Quixel Research. Three-quarters of those participating in the study said they had had a positive 3-D experience recently and nearly half said they would like to do so in the comfort of their own home. TWICE (11/19)

In a good news/bad news scenario for set-top box manufacturers, a new study from ABI Research suggests that global STB shipments will rise to 110 million units by 2012 before beginning a gradual decline after that. The report said STB shipments would begin to dip in about four years because of a number of factors, including the transition to all-digital TV signals, similar technology that increasingly will come embedded in TVs and the rise of over-the-top broadband video providers. ipTVnews (11/19) , Telephony Online (11/19)

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WIRELESS by Marauder
October 2, 2008, 6:10 PM
Filed under: WIRELESS | Tags: , , , , , , ,

WIRELESS

Nokia announced their Comes With Music program last month, a media download offering with backing from Sony BMG, Warner Music Group, EMI, and Universal Music Group.  The system, along with the Nokia Music Store, has about 5 million tracks currently available and Nokia has announced the Music PC client for easy downloads. You can drag CDs into the application for immediate ripping. Comes With Music streamlines that process by offering unlimited over-the-air downloads your first year of phone ownership – provided you own a CWM handset – and the music remains in your possession after your contract is up. The contract lasts from 12 to 18 months and you enable the service by entering a code that will come with your new phone. (http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2008/10/02/nokias-comes-with-music-on-the-5800-nokias-attempt-to-out-itunes-itunes 10/2)

Qik has announced that its video streaming software will come pre-installed on Nokia’s just-launched 5800 XpressMusic touchscreen phone – the first deal of its kind for the still-young startup. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/10/02/qik-to-come-pre-loaded-on-new-nokia-phone 10/2)

Google has posted some more information about how search has been integrated into the first Android-powered phone, the T-Mobile G1, which goes on sale October 22. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/10/02/is-search-the-best-user-interface-for-mobile 10/2)

News is in the eye of the beholder. CBS is catching flak over inappropriate content users are uploading via its new citizen journalist iPhone app CBSeyemoblie, reports AdAge. The COO of BrandContent, the ad agency which powers advertising on the service, discovered multiple photos and videos of various unsavory acts. CBS promises to redouble its effort to police the uploads. (Cynopsis 10/2)

In iPhone news, Adobe is ready to finally release a version of Flash for the iPhone if it passes the App Store screening process, according to AppleInsider. (Cynopsis 10/2)

Who needs a Nintendo Wii when you’ve got an iPhone? The Social Gaming Network, which released a Wii-like golfing game for the iPhone two weeks ago, has now followed up with a bowling game. As with iGolf (which has already been downloaded more than 900,000 times), iBowl uses the iPhone’s accelerometer to detect a player’s swing. You can twist your wrist to give the ball spin or direct it to the pins. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/10/02/from-the-makers-of-igolf-comes-ibowl-just-dont-drop-that-iphone 10/2)

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ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA by Marauder

ONLINE SERVICES/INTERACTIVE MEDIA

To support the release of two portable media players Dell is working on launching its own online media outlet to rival iTunes, reports BusinessWeek. Utilizing the technology it acquired when it purchased wireless content delivery platform Zing, the idea is to allow content to be purchased and played on multiple devices without a computer. Dell is now in the process of attempting to strike deals with many of the same content providers that supply iTunes. (Cynopsis 8/18)

Some major media companies are having a change of heart regarding pirated video on YouTube. CBS, Universal Music, Lionsgate and Electronic Arts have stopped prodding YouTube to remove their unauthorized clips and started selling advertising against them. (Iwantmedia 8/18, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/16/technology/16tube.html 8/16)

NBC today rolled out the new online sci-fi series Gemini Division, available on NBC.com and Scifi.com.  The show, which consists of 52 “Webisodes,” is backed by NBC’s digital division and features movie star Rosario Dawson, who plays an NYPD vice cop investigating the murder of her boyfriend, who turns out to be a form of artificial life known as a SIM. (http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/sfgate/detail?blogid=19&entry_id=29224 8/18)

Click below to watch the first 2 webisodes.

Pandora made a bold political statement today, saying they’d likely shut down rather than continue to pay exorbitant fees to play music to listeners of its massively popular service.  Radio stations pay different rates depending on how they broadcast music. Terrestrial stations (normal FM/AM stations) pay nothing, a tribute to their powerful corporate parents with limitless lobbying budgets. Satellite stations pay approximately 1.6 cents per hour per listener. By 2010, Pandora and other Internet radio stations, which have few lobbying resources, must pay 2.91 cents. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/08/16/perhaps-pandora-must-be-our-sacrificial-lamb 8/16)

As someone who had a former career in radio, I have to say, artists and labels are completely in the wrong on this one.  Labels wine and dine Program Directors (those who schedule the music in rotation) in hopes that their music gets aired.  Now, as the audience shifts online, they want companies to pay to play their music?  I’m sorry.  Did I miss something?  Oh that’s right, this rigidity is exactly what continues to cripple the music industry.  Terrestial radio = music promotion.  So shouldn’t it follow that online radio also = music promotion.  Music label desperation = unwieldy regulation.  If I (music label) can’t make money on it, no one will!  Sounds like a sad case of domestic abuse.  Here’s my open note to music labels: anything that helps your audience discover your artist is a good thing, especially if in this case, a direct link can be established between the song and the online store that sells the song (i.e. iTunes).  Back in the day, listeners would call incessantly to ask the name of the song I just played so that they could purchase the song later.  The direct online link poses an easier discovery method and one that should lead more often to a legitimate sale.  And one more thing, the Pandoras of the world aside, those that really feel the burn of this legislation are small independent stations like the gem that is KCRW (Santa Monica, CA station).

A new site called SportsFanLive from LA-based Sports Media Ventures takes some of the most infectious social networking components – polls, messaging, betting, and mapping – and uses them to create a hang out for die hard sports fans. The interface is entirely customizable based on what teams you like (and hate.) (Cynopsis 8/18)

AppVee rates each iPhone application based on a variety of factors depending on the type of app. For entertainment applications, for example, apps are rated on ease of use, features, frequency of use, interface and usefulness. User ratings are also collected and placed alongside the official AppVee review. (http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/08/16/great-review-site-for-iphone-apps 8/16)

Facebook launched a new ad unit combining multimedia with user commenting, notes Inside Facebook. An ad for the new Ben Stiller comedy Tropic Thunder (the weekend’s top movie) was the first to take advantage of the new format, offering users the option to launch a video trailer, view a review blurb of the movie from Rolling Stone or add and forward comments to friends. (Cynopsis 8/18)

IFC.com unveiled all 7 episodes of Pushing Twilight, the first scripted web series to come out of its Media Lab Studios division created to identify and incubate budding filmmaking talent. The show is based on a trailer submitted by Creator Steven Sprinkles and writer Stu Chait in the Red Bull After Hours contest. (Cynopsis 8/18)

Why are web series now synonymous with awful?  I couldn’t even force my way through the first episode.  At this point, I think a web series this awful seems to discredit the entire online content genre.

Nextflix told Reuters it is up and running again after last week’s distribution snafus and is promising to issue a 15% refund to the customers who were effected by the problems (estimated to be about 1/3 of its 8.4 million subscribers.) (Cynopsis 8/18)

Tinker Bell, one of Disney’s most popular classic characters, never spoke a word in the studio’s 1953 “Peter Pan” movie. But that will soon change. Tinker Bell is being recast in the hope of launching a new billion-dollar franchise aimed at young girls, with her own online community. (Iwantmedia 8/18, http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2008120426_tinker18.html 8/18)

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